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March 10, 2015

Should Hospitals Study Google’s Approach to Employee Engagement?

Hospitals are rightly concerned about employee engagement. With Medicare linking payment to patient satisfaction scores and the impact of the Affordable Care Act, which links Medicare payments to quality care (Hospital Value-based Purchasing), hospitals are looking for ways to boost employee engagement.

“Without employee engagement you’re never going to get the kind of ultimate patient experience you’re hoping for,” according to Mike Packnett, CEO, Parkview Health, as quoted in a blog titled “The ROI of Employee Engagement in Hospitals.”

The article suggests that rather than think of employee engagement as something that’s “nice to have,” it should be looked at as a program that supports important goals.

Employee engagement in hospitals has been shown to have an impact on mortality. A Gallup study of 200 hospitals found that the engagement level of nurses was a key factor in patient mortality.  The same study also found that the level of nurse engagement correlated to rate of complications.

All of which brings us to Google. The company is known for the perks it provides employees, including the gourmet food available in its cafeteria. But none of this is a “nice to have.” Everything that supports the luxurious environment Google has created for its employees is based on cold, hard data.

Becker’s Hospital Review suggests that hospitals do the same. In a February 28 article titled “The Google Approach: How Hospitals Can Create Cultures That Drive Employee Engagement Satisfaction,” by Helen Adamopoulos, the publication cited Hoag Orthopedic Institute, Irvine, California, where survey results were used to address employee concerns.  Kanoe Allen, chief nursing officer at Hoag said, “Taking care of our employees generates good will for all of us and our patients, and it’s evidenced in our HCAHPS scores,” according to the article.

The HCAHPS (Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems) is a national survey developed by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). The results are publicly reported. It seems all eyes are on hospitals these day. It also appears to be true that engaged hospital employees deliver great patient care.

Contact a Marketing Innovators specialist  today to learn how your healthcare organization can improve employee engagement.

Read how a Fortune 500 healthcare products company increased employee engagement with its rewards and recognition program in this Marketing Innovators case study.



Becker’s Hospital “The Google Approach: How Hospitals Can Create Cultures That Drive Employee Engagement Satisfaction,” by Helen Adamopoulos, February 28, 2014. “The ROI of Employee Engagement in Hospitals,” Kevin Kruse, February 26, 2015. “Nurse Engagement Key to Preventing Medical Errors,” Richard Blizzard, D.B.A., Health and Healthcare Editor, December 27, 2005.

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